WASHINGTON — Apparel and textile imports to the U.S. rose 3.5 percent in October on a year-over-year basis, as retailers boosted inventories in advance of the holiday season and rushed to beat a port strike that was later resolved on the West Coast, a report on Tuesday from the Commerce Department’s Office of Textiles and Apparel showed.
Combined apparel and textile shipments reached 4.8 billion square meter equivalents in the month, with apparel imports up 5.8 percent to 2.2 billion SME and textile shipments increasing 1.7 percent to 2.6 billion SME.
“I think people were trying to rush in their shipments with all of the uncertainty on the West Coast [and the potential for a port strike], which didn’t become a big problem, and all of the uncertainties about a port strike on the East Coast,” said Nate Herman, vice president of international trade at the American Apparel & Footwear Association.
On the West Coast, an eight-day port strike at the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach ended after federal mediators intervened on Dec. 5. However, concerns are still running high about a possible port strike at the East and Gulf Coast ports. Talks between the United States Maritime Alliance and International Longshoremen Association over a new contract covering workers at ports from Maine to Texas and affecting about 20 percent of all apparel, textiles and footwear trade, are ongoing, but the extension expires Dec. 29 and importers are anxious a resolution will not be reached in time.
Kevin Burke, president and chief executive officer of the AAFA, said, “If a strike occurs, we will witness damage much greater than what we saw last week, which will hurt U.S. businesses, American workers and hard-working American families, all at a time when the U.S. economy can least afford it.”
Apparel and textile shipments from China, the top supplier to the U.S., rose 5.4 percent to 2.4 billion SME compared with October 2011. Combined shipments from Vietnam, the number-two supplier, were up 7.8 percent to 310 million SME from a year earlier. Indonesia had the largest industry increase, up 13.8 percent to 137 million SME, followed by South Korea’s 3.1 percent gain to 110 million SME, Mexico’s 1.9 percent uptick to 211 million SME, India’s 1.8 percent gain to 281 million SME and Bangladesh’s 1.6 percent hike to 117 million SME.
Apparel shipments from Central America and the Dominican Republic, all signatories in the Central American Free Trade Agreement, fell 1.7 percent in October year-on-year. By comparison, combined shipments from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations countries rose 7.8 percent in October compared with a year earlier. Canada posted the largest decline in combined apparel and textile shipments, falling 16 percent to 94 million SME in the month.
The overall trade deficit in October widened to $42.2 billion from $40.3 billion in September.
@chanel and @pharrell dropped what’s being dubbed as the world’s most exclusive sneakers yesterday. The Adidas Originals NMD Hu, which Williams designed in collaboration with Chanel and @adidasoriginals, has a waiting list of over 120K people who pre-registered online at chanelatcolette.fr –– and only 500 pairs are on sale. The singer predicted the resale value of the shoes could reach $40K. Read the full interview on WWD.com. Link in bio. #wwdfashion (📷: Dominique Maître)
@imanshumpert is diving deeper into his creative endeavors and relaunching his clothing line, Post 90s, and is helping to raise money for the hurricane victims in St. Maarten with a jersey he’s designed with his brother. The Cleveland Cavaliers player talked to WWD about kneeling during the national anthem, working with fashion brands and how he wants to be more than an @nba player. Read the interview on WWD.com #wwdfashion (📷: George Chinese)
Not only does #TheProfit return to CNBC tonight, but @marcuslemonis has launched @shopmarcus, a new shopping and lifestyle retail experience in Aspen and Chicago, with more locations to come. The retail stores offer in-store stylists and a variety of contemporary womenswear selections.
“It’s life, I’m going to face it,” @mingxi11 sighed. “I fell, but you know, I think the most important thing is that I get back up. I had the love, the help from my sister — the girl next to me Gizele [Oliveira] — she’s so nice. When I went backstage everybody was trying to comfort me like ‘Oh Ming, it’s OK.’ I’m really, really touched. I think it’s them who gave me the courage to go back on stage for the finale,” Xi told WWD of her fall at the @victoriassecret fashion show. (📷: David Fisher) #wwdfashion #vsfashionshow #victoriassecret
@louisvuitton tapped @therealpeterlindbergh for its latest city-centric photo book, which is part of a series called Fashion Eye. The primarily black and white book captures the spirit of Berlin in 57 images shot between 1989 and 2019. “Berlin is an inspiration for me, more than a city. I mean @millajovovich is simply Berlin!” said Lindbergh. #wwdfashion
“You know, I think audiences expect a certain performance so I have to deliver to them what they’re expecting to a certain degree. But I’m also a different actor and a different person, I have my own spin on the character,” says @noahegalvin of his takeover of the leading role in “Dear Evan Hansen” following the departure of @bensplatt, who originated the role. Read WWD’s interview with the 23-year-old actor on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
For pre-fall 2018, @etro created richly-colored wonderland, using tapestries, textiles and wallpapers from the Eastern world at large. The line featured floral and graphic prints and jacquard motifs, like this two-piece look featured here. #wwdfashion (📷: Giovanna Pavesi)
@kith is moving into children’s. The men’s and women’s streetwear brand has launched Kidset, a Kith kids line located in New York at 64 Bleecker Street. The line includes mini versions of staple Kith pieces like the Astor bomber jacket and the Kith box logo sweatshirts, along with a wall that can display up to 120 pairs of shoes from @adidas, @newbalance, @timberland and more. #wwdfashion
“I just wanted to create this fully rounded character, but I do think what excited me most was just the opportunity to give a group of people representation that I feel needs it. I like to do characters in projects that stand for something and Karolina definitely does, so that was really exciting to me,” @ginnygardner says of her new role in @hulu’s “The Runaways.” Gardner plays Karolina Dean, a queer superhero, which is a rarity for @marvel. Read more about Gardner’s character on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @dandoperalski)